Clovis, NM ~ Ninth Judicial District Attorney Matthew Chandler announced that Dawn Lebow, age 45, was found guilty today of 23-counts of Forgery and sentenced to spend the next four (4) years in the New Mexico State Penitentiary. Also at today’s sentencing, Lebow provided the court with $60,000 in restitution for the victims of her crimes and was ordered to pay an additional $30,000 after being released from prison.
Clovis Police Department launched an investigation in September 2009 after authorities were notified that over fourteen (14) ‘burial accounts’ of disabled clients from ENMRSH were suspiciously closed at a local bank. ENMRSH provides services to disabled clients receiving disability funds, to include accounts to cover burial costs of the clients upon their death. Clovis Police Department Detective Sunny Smith and Detective Eric Muller discovered that Dawn Lebow, an employee at the local bank, was assigned duties to included approving invoices from various business accounts where checks were cashed. Through the investigation, officers found that Lebow was spending much of her time at the bank locating dormant accounts, embezzling the funds, and closing the accounts without knowledge from account holders. Law enforcement requested an audit of the accounts Lebow had accessed and it was determined that Lebow embezzled approximately $90,000 from dormant accounts and fraudulently closed approximately 42 accounts.
The Honorable Judge Teddy Hartley presided over the sentencing and Chief Deputy District Attorney Andrea Reeb prosecuted the case for the State. The Court sentenced Lebow to serve four (4) years in prison for her actions and ordered Lebow to immediately pay $60,000 in restitution back to the bank and its clients, which she did at today’s hearing. After serving her prison sentence, Lebow faces a period of five (5) years supervised probation where she must also pay the remaining $30,000 of restitution monies owed to the bank.